Hey guys! Hope you’re all doing very well and that you had a lovely Christmas.
Just like that, another year has gone and we’re only one day away from 2019. This will be my third annual reflection and I’ve found that it usually opens up a really interesting dialogue in the comment section and we can all keep each other accountable about new year goals too. This year I’ll be discussing a few topics that shaped my 2018 including: sacrifice and saving, gaining more confidence through finally passing my driving test and my 2019 goals…
We didn’t go on any holidays this year, but we saved enough for our house deposit!
I remember in my 2017 reflections blog post I talked about how I went to both Nigeria and India for weddings of close family and friends, and it was such a highlight of my year. I absolutely loved travelling and seeing more parts of the world, and I had so much fun doing it. But this year, I didn’t go on any abroad holidays and at first I felt a bit down about that.
It’s very easy to get sucked into comparing yourself to other people, especially when you see “everyone” jet-setting and having a great time in this country or that country on social media. But I just want to encourage you (and myself) to always remember that everyone has different priorities in life and that’s totally okay. If your imminent priority is to save for a house or wedding etc., like mine was, then naturally that comes with a sacrifice. And you have to be willing and ready to tell yourself no, over and over again. More importantly, we don’t need to be in competition with one another, and this year has really taught me the importance of delayed gratification.
It’s like God was constantly telling me this year, “not now, Wunmi” or “be patient”, and that can be so painful to hear when you really really want something now. When I felt like giving in e.g. making a lavish purchase or a hasty decision, I would try to pause and wait it out. I’ve found it to be quite effective before committing to something, to stop and ask myself if I still really want/need it in 2 weeks. It’s likely that the “need” won’t feel so urgent anymore, and I’ll have successfully curbed the desire for immediate gratification. I also have loads of tangible reminders of my goals hanging up in my bedroom, on my phone and even my engagement ring is a constant reminder of the bigger picture.
Despite the agony of being patient sometimes, I can honestly say that God’s timing has never failed me so far. His divine plan is always better than mine. A prime example of this: this time last year I thought I would be married by now, but we ended up moving the wedding date back 6 months and this has been such a blessing in disguise for us. Things have fallen into place in such a way that would not have been nearly as smooth if we got married when we originally wanted to.
Passing my driving test (finally!) has given me a new sense of resilience and confidence in myself
Another momentous occasion in 2018 was finally passing my driving test. I’m really pleased because I wanted to pass before getting married and I did it! It took me five tests to pass and I’m not ashamed to admit that. It is what it is lol.
I learned quite a few things from the whole experience. Firstly, there’s no shame in failing before succeeding. Of course failure in general is not a new concept to me, but to be honest, driving is something that I thought would come quite naturally to me. It’s something that I saw everyone around me doing effortlessly and I didn’t imagine it would ever be so tricky for me to get right. Now, I drive pretty much every weekday and I’m on the roads just like everyone else. Nobody knows or cares how many times I took my driving test before I passed, it’s just part of my story now. Sometimes I wonder why did I have to fail so many times before eventually passing… was it to make me a better driver? To make me appreciate owning a car? To increase my patience even more? I’m still not quite sure, but I do know that I am thankful to have made it to the light at the end of the tunnel.
Secondly, the experience taught me that resilience is crucial to success. The ability to bounce back after a set back is essential in order to achieve what we really want in life, because not everything can come easy to everyone. We can’t just give up at the first, second or even third hurdle sometimes. I can only imagine just how utterly unfulfilled and miserable I would feel right now if I gave up after driving test number 4, not knowing that I just needed one more attempt to pass. Don’t get me wrong… it was really crushing being told I’d failed again and again, (especially once I was a competent driver and it was just small things that I was failing on). I was devastated every time I failed and often it took the encouragement of my fiancé or my friends to pick myself back up again. But ultimately, I knew in myself that I had to keep trying and I had a vivid image of myself passing in my head that I was determined to bring to fruition.
Lastly, driving has also given me more confidence in myself; I’ve definitely become more independent and responsible as a result. It’s also really nice to be able to serve other people for a change! I may not have the flashiest car (*cough* delayed gratification), but it definitely gets me from A to B and I’m super grateful and blessed to have even been able to get a car amidst all of our saving goals this year. Time and time again, God’s timing is truly awesome and this is a huge, long awaited testimony of mine.
In 2019, I want to have fun whilst growing and developing myself
This year I have worked hard. There’s still so much work to do and now is not the time to get complacent and lazy, I’m only 23. But next year, I want to balance working hard with enjoying myself even more. The latter half of this year has especially shown me that prioritising having fun sometimes doesn’t make me lazy or irresponsible, it’s actually healthy, and good for my personal growth and well-being. Therefore, in 2019 I want to spend much more quality time with my family and my friends, pouring into people and loving them. So yes, having fun is a priority!
I discussed this a bit in my last blog post, but 2019 is also the year that I would love to launch my nail polish business. I want to take this opportunity to thank every single one of you that has encouraged me in this regard, your feedback does not go unnoticed. It’s so refreshing and motivating – you have no idea how much it helps me, so thank you once again. To keep up to date with my progress, you can check out my nail polish Instagram: @wunmsnails.
In 2019 I will also become a wife! I’m excited to go on this journey with an amazing man, and in one year from now it will be very interesting to see what I will have learned from our first year of marriage. Aside from marriage, I’m not sure what the future holds for my blog. I’ve really struggled with time management since starting full-time work and I do feel bad for neglecting my blog so much this year. I enjoy writing and I strongly believe that (one of ) my purposes in life is deeply intertwined in this. However, I am praying for more clarity and direction in 2019, and I would love to know what type of content and topics you guys actually want to see from me. Of course I’ll probably still be discussing relationships and marriage, but if you have any more suggestions, please let me know in the comment section down below.
What are some of your highlights and lessons learned in 2018? Have you set any goals for 2019? I’m excited to read about what you guys have been up to, do share your nuggets in the comment section down below!
More than our material desires, I pray that God really transforms our hearts this year and makes us better people, that can truly impact positive change in the world for His glory.
God bless you and Happy New Year!
“So don’t worry about these things, saying, ‘What will we eat? What will we drink? What will we wear?’ These things dominate the thoughts of unbelievers, but your heavenly Father already knows all your needs. Seek the Kingdom of God above all else, and live righteously, and he will give you everything you need. – Matthew 6:31-33